April 5 2017

Short Timers?

I was a horrible student as a teenager.   I remember taking Algebra…and failing it when I was in High School.    I saw no use for it.   It wasn’t relevant to my life.  

It didn’t matter if I could solve an equation and tell you what “x” was.  Why?    

Because it didn’t matter to me.    As a high school senior I had determined that I wanted to be a police officer.  I was going to graduate high school….and I was going to major in Criminal Justice.     I just KNEW as a police officer that I would NEVER have to solve an algebraic equation.    I just wasn’t worth doing, in my mind.   Weird how things change…and careers change

I wonder how many people have the same notion when it comes to studying the Bible.      I wonder how many people feel the same way about the Christian life in general.  

Oh..sure……it’s good to sing songs to God on Sunday morning…it’s good to pray on Sunday morning…it’s good to go to church….but is that REALLY supposed to change the way we live every other day of the week?  

We are told that if we trust in Jesus we will go to heaven.   And we will.   Jesus’ death on the cross is the payment that secures our home in Heaven.    If we trust in HIM our eternal destiny is secure.    It’s not even up for debate.      The man that tells you that Jesus is not enough needs to be rebuked.   

But what AFTER that?    Do we simply trust Jesus and then go back to our life?   We trust Jesus…then…..what?  

The apostle Paul considered Jesus to be worth giving up all he knew in life.   He wanted nothing more than to serve God.     When it comes down to it….a Christian’s faith should be more than the 1 time salvation event.  It’s more than simply trusting Jesus once and then going on with life.  

The Christian life is about growing to be more like Jesus every day.  

So the main point today that I want to make:     Keep your eye on the prize.     The passage today assumes something:    That people reading it are people that already KNOW Jesus – they’ve trusted in him and have a saving faith in Him.       AFTER that…God’s Word has something to say about how we should live   

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March 8 2017

Be the Light!

I began this sermon with a short story.  Unfortunately, I'm beginning to realize that I'm not a comedian...and this kind of fell flat!   

 

One night a motorist was run down by a train at a grade crossing. The old signal man in charge of the crossing had to appear in court. After a severe cross-examination, he was still unshaken. He said he had waved his lantern frantically, but all to no avail. The following day the superintendent of the line called him into his office. "You did wonderfully well yesterday, Tom," he said. "I was afraid at first that you might waver." "No, sir," replied Tom, "but I was afraid that old lawyer was going to ask me whether or not my lantern was lit!"—Sunday School Times. 

The point?   A light is useless if it's not lit.    Are we showing our lights to the world?      

Let's look at Philippians 2.   

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March 2 2017

Together for Christ

Last summer I was talking with another pastor.   We were talking about our respective churches.   Did you guys know that pastors do that?  We like to talk!    We were discussing some of the things going on…some of the activities…some of the ministries we have going.   And he made an interesting comment….He said he wanted people in his church to be part of his church…..

  • Not because their names were on the membership roll…
  • Not because they were born a part of it and grew up in it…..
  • Not because they were part of that denomination…..
  • Not because they liked the music…
  • Not because they liked the preaching, even….

The reason he wanted people to be a part of his church….was because they wanted to be part of the PEOPLE of that church.   

I think that’s what the world craves today—they want to be part of something that is REAL.   I think people are tired of playing games…tired of going through the motions…tired of just putting on a front to impress others.   

Guys..if that’s what church is all about to you….I think we have the wrong idea.    We come to church because we’re part of the family of God.     And a family should love each other,  enjoy spending time with each other….and be united.   

Today…we see the apostle Paul expounding on that idea.   Today….he talks about being united in the Gospel…united as the family of God.  

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February 20 2017

To Die is Gain, to Live is Christ

The thesis for today's message is from Philippians 1:23.    To live is Christ, to Die is Gain.   I'll look at the 2nd clause first...because I think Paul was focusing on the first -- to LIVE for Christ.   The life of a Christian should be marked with a devotion to Christ -- we should want to "Jump right in with both feet" to the Christian life.    Too often, we tend to simply be content with going in tentatively, and mrely testing the waters, but never really giving our whole selves to him.      

 

Let's open to Philiippians 1 and see what God's Word says.  

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February 17 2017

Loving Others for the Sake of the Gospel

What are you willing to suffer for the sake of the Gospel?  Inconvenience?   Hardship?  Persecution?     The apostle Paul encouraged the Philippian church to suffer for the sake of the Gospel.     

Let's turn to Philippians 1 and see what he says:   

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February 6 2017

Participating in the Gospel

There is Joy in the Gospel      In the midst of trial…in heartache……there is joy.   

That’s the overall message of Philippians.   Joy.   

Today…we see what Paul has to say about it.  Today…..in the first chapter we read what he has to say about his own sufferings – and how God has worked through it  

Let’s open to Philippians 1:1-11   

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